Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Here There Be Guesses

My official guess at who the Cartographer of Lost Places in James Owen's Here, There Be Dragons is Constantine the Great. Apparently he reveals it in the third book coming out this fall, so we'll see if I came close.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Secret Agent Puppy

Here's my second-hand telling of a story from our friend, Jen:

At work the other day, Jen picks up a message taken by the receptionist from the owner of a dog who is coming in for an appointment in an hour or so. The message says "I think my dog is dea." Jen thinks, "What? He thinks his dog is in the Drug Enforcement Agency? What does that have to do with me?" Of course, after the kind of crazy thought, then the more serious thought was "If he thinks his dog is dead, why did he just call in yesterday and make an appointment and wait more than a day to see us?"

Turns out the dog is deaf.

Hellboy II Review

Liked it. Was exactly as expected--incredible visuals and great fight scenes. Just what the doctor ordered. B

NPR Inspired Rants

First, I am getting very tired of hearing all about the evil banks and mortgage companies who have stolen homes from all the poor pitiful jerks with terrible credit (and I know what that's like) who signed up for loans they couldn't afford.

Second, maybe it's just me but it seems almost immoral for people to spend thousands of dollars on surgeries and chemotherapy for their pet goose (or cat or dog) when so many people can't afford even basic health care. I know this may sound odd coming from me, but it just feels sort of sick and wrong.

Finally: "Is there anything St. Louis can do about InBev's purchase of Anheuser-Busch?"
Um, no. So what? Of course, to the question asked on tonight's news "Should we all stop drinking Anheuser-Busch products?" my husband shouted a resounding "YES! I've been saying that for years!" But I don't think he meant we should stop drinking them in protest. I think he's just a beer snob.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

In Memory of Zero

We will miss Adam "Dean" Quayle (it's okay to giggle at this point) Lutz, a.k.a. Patient Zero.

1973 - 2008


For the Music Fans

The new music of the month (not that new, but on my I'm-finally-paying-attention-to-it list) is The Fratellis' Costello Music. It's a whole album of "Ob-La-Di Ob-La-Da" style of Beatles homage. Fun, lively, musical, and still with a little something to say here and there.

Now don't get me wrong, I'm not saying the Fratellis are The Beatles. Costello Music doesn't show anything like the range of Beatles we know (and how could it--it's only their first album, after all). It's entirely the jangle pop variety, but it's really really good for what it is.

I'll definitely be checking out their second album which comes out tomorrow. (I told you I was just getting around to paying attention to this album.)

This is a shame

The Hilton Hotel in Las Vegas is shutting down Star Trek: The Experience this September first. It's part museum, part gift shop/restaurant, part environment and part simulator/Disney-like ride. And for Trek fans it's a really FUN "Experience." At least I've been there and done that.

But I'm bummed I'll never get to drag any next-generation Murphy's to it.

Scary Bugs

Woah! I'm afraid. I'm very afraid.

That Jerk James Frey

I have no idea why, but quite a while after the fact, and without being an actual victim of the fraud, that James Frey really chaps my ass. In fact, the more I think about him, and each time I think about him, I find myself getting angrier and angrier. Actually angry. My efforts over the last 5 minutes of very deep and thoughtful introspection (hey, at least it was an attempt!) to figure out why have been fruitless. So I'll just go with it--what the hell. It's my blog.

I was recently reading a review of James Frey's new novel which came out a month or so ago which gave the novel a positive review, calling Frey a "wildly talented storyteller" and commenting that the novel is "so powerful it makes one wonder why he ever detoured into nonfiction." Um. WHAT?????

I can't believe any respectable reviewer (although admittedly this reviewer works for People magazine, so maybe respectability is relative) can give this prick any positive support at all. Much less to call his prior work nonfiction after all we have learned.

What really makes me angry about this jerk, is that he could never admit it. He always said and still states that the differences between his published story and actual events were "minor changes" that any memoirist has ever right to make, and in fact, can't help making as they must rely on their own memories. AAARRRGGH!!!! I just want to slap him.

And now this idiot woman calls A Million Little Pieces nonfiction. Still. Didn't she get the memo? He was always just a powerful storyteller. Why can't the rest of us at least be clear and honest about that? Even if James Frey can't.

Get Smart Review

I liked it. I didn't love it. I wasn't blown away. But I did laugh. And I did not feel that I wasted either my time or my money. So I guess that means I give it about a 3-star rating.

All the actors did a fine job. I was particularly charmed by The Rock, actually. And I usually find Steve Carrell (how do you spell that?) entertaining. Jason strangely liked Anne Hathaway's performance--and he usually can't stand her. I usually find her cute and disliked her in this. Maybe it's a man-woman thing.

Anyway, they used the appropriate key lines and goofy gadgets from the original series and updated many of them effectively. I'm calling it a successful summer relaxation film.


Just how long did they think the ability to keep making more and more money from expensive coffee and a canned "vibe" would last? I know that as a non-coffee-drinker I am hardly the audience for Starbuck's, but I can't help agreeing with the Buck Naked Politics blogger quoted in the article in thinking that food (especially of the healthy variety appealing to the otherwise yuppie clientele) and music that is occasionally actually interesting and different might have helped.

Thank You for the Music

ABBA proves that they really are the coolest. I'm so glad there's at least one older group who we can just remember playing as young, enthusiastic, creative kids. And that memory won't be tainted with visions of their gray-haired wrinkled 50-something selves trying to relive their youth re-hashing the same old tunes with no new flavor or style. Way to go, guys.

Marketing the Royal Family

I don't know. Maybe it's just me. But the British Royal Family's website just strikes me as funny. I mean, it could be a marketing website for any sightseeing spot, point of interest, chamber of commerce, small town or other organization. It just seems so... ...ordinary.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Wall-E Review

Adorable! 4.5 maybe 5 stars. Just adorable and the animation in the first half just blew me away. I don't know what else to say. See it.